Shettles Method – Trying For A Boy Or Girl

Gender selection has long been a topic of debate.

While some gender selection methods claim to be highly successful, they often disregard other methods, claiming their own to be more accurate.

The shettles method is a gender swaying method that has been around for decades, and it has it’s fair share of believers and skeptics.

Of course, the most desirable outcome from conception is a healthy baby, no matter which gender. Gender selection should not rule your attempts at conception. Some gender selection methods can actually decrease the chance of conception due to timing methods.

Please note that the information below on the shettles method has been included due to popular request and is for reference only. It is not guaranteed to give you the ‘recipe’ for the desired gender you are trying for.

The Shettles Method

Since the 1960s, Dr. Shettles has recommended gender selection methods which he claims is upheld by scientific evidence. The shettles method has two distinct advantages: the methods cost nothing and you do not require and medical treatments to conceive.

Men produce two types of sperm — X being female and Y being male. This will determine the sex of your baby. Doctor Shettles found from his studies that the male sperm are smaller, weaker and faster than the female sperm, which are bigger, stronger and slower. Therefore, he was able to come to the following suggestions to help couples try and choose the sex of their baby.

The Most Important Shettles Method Factor: Timing

The most important gender swaying factor according to the Shettles method is timing of intercourse.

Shettles says the closer to ovulation you have intercourse, the higher the likelihood you will have a boy. This is because he claims male sperm are faster than female sperm, and will likely reach the egg first.

However, a study some years ago found there were no differences between X and Y sperm in terms of how fast they swim.

If you would like a boy, Shettles says intercourse should take place during times of peak fertile mucus, or no more than 12 hours before ovulation. You can detect ovulation through charting or with ovulation prediction kits (similar to pregnancy tests). If you chart your cycle temperatures daily and have a temperature dip, this is a good time to have intercourse, or alternately, the following morning. You can also have intercourse for a boy when your cervical mucus changes into stringy, fertile mucus — like egg white.

If you have intercourse two to four days prior to ovulation, the Shettles method states this favours the conception of a girl. This is because the female sperm live for much longer than the male sperm. It allows for more female sperm to reach the egg. So if you would like a girl, avoid having intercourse during times of your peak fertile mucus (egg white cervical mucus) which would be more conducive for a boy.

By following the Shettles Method, there is less chance of achieving female conception as you are not having intercourse during your peak fertile times. So if pregnancy is more important to you than having a girl baby, the shettles method may not be for you.

Baby Gender Selection Factor: Vaginal pH

The Shettles method says an acidic environment is more favourable for the conception of a girl. It’s apparently not as welcoming for male sperm, and the acidic environment kills the weaker male sperm first. This leaves a greater number of female sperm to reach the egg. The ideal time to have sex for a boy is when the vaginal environment becomes alkaline, which is on the day you ovulate.

Baby Gender Selection Factor: Abstinence

For a boy, the shettles method advises not have intercourse for four to five days prior to ovulation. You should use a condom if you wish to have sex during this time.

For a girl, Shettles recommends daily intercourse from the end of your period until 2-4 days prior to ovulation, then no intercourse until 2-3 days after ovulation.

Baby Gender Selection Factor: Sexual Position

Sexual position is said to help your chances of gender selection due to both depth of penetration and pH levels. The closer to the opening of the vagina, the more acidic the woman’s reproductive tract is.

Shettles method suggests a position with deeper penetration (e.g. doggy-style) for a boy. This will apparently place the male sperm closer to the egg, giving them a head start.

The Shettles method recommends the missionary position when trying to conceive a girl.

Baby Gender Selection Factor: Orgasm

To conceive a boy, the woman should try to achieve orgasm either before or at the same time as her partner — or if you are lucky enough, multiple female orgasms can help! The Shettles method says that the waves of the orgasm will help to draw up the sperm quicker to the egg, again giving the boys getting a head start on the girls.

For a girl, Shettles recommends women avoid orgasm.

Other Baby Gender Selection Factors

Here’s one for the men: if you’d like to try for a boy, the shettles method suggests for men try and keep the scrotal temperature cool. This means no hot spas or baths and no tight clothing or underwear. Boxer shorts are a good alternative. Avoid scuba diving and heated vehicles for extended durations (or other areas of high heat).

Shettles suggests a few cups of strong coffee half an hour before intercourse to favour a boy. As long as you’re aware that too much caffeine can impact on fertility, as well as your health and wellbeing.

What Is The Success Rate?

Doctor Shettles claims that his methods for a boy have a success rate of 80-85% and the methods for a girl are a little less at 75-80%.

More Information?

Check out the book, How to Choose the Sex of Your Baby: The Method Best Supported by Scientific Evidence by Dr. Shettles. Another book written on conceiving for specific genders is Choose the Sex of Your Baby – The Natural Way.

Experiencing Feelings Of Gender Disappointment Or Anxiety?

If you are experiencing feelings of gender disappointment, BellyBelly has published an article on this topic here.

Last Updated: November 10, 2015


Kelly Winder is the creator of, a doula, writer and mother to three awesome children. Currently, she's travelling the world for 12 months with her partner and children, and hopes to inspire more families to do the same. Visit for more information.


    1. Priya, you need to test before ovulation. When you test positive for an LH surge, you have 24-48 hours to have intercourse for the highest chance of conception occurring in that cycle :)

  1. I know that according to judaism, meaning the jewish approach to human sexuality and romance, a woman who orgasms first will conceive a boy. this ideology is based on a phrase or sentence in the Old Testement.
    Anyone interested in more can contact me

    sincerely, esther yolanda cohn

    1. Actually I dnt believe this bc I had my little boy first and I didn’t have an orgasm when we concived him and I had multiple orgasm for my little girl that I’m pregnant for now… I’m not sure this is true or the other way is true but that is my experience with it

  2. I did this for all my kids and it works. Get an ovulation test and figure out what day you ovulate on and if you want a girl have sex before you ovulate and for a boy during ovulation. You have to start testing a month or two before you want to conceive so you know your Exact date of ovulation, since timing is everything. I have told other couples how to get a girl and it worked for them too. I have 3 kids and I knew the sex of all my babies before the Dr told me, girl, boy, boy. Good luck!

    1. I am wanting to try for a boy however will of course be happy with either. So I have been testing my CM and I never have got an egg white stretchy clear mucus. It’s clear ish and thicker for a day maybe but not stretchy at all then it’s super thick and creamy looking. Do you think I’m missing it? I am also having 35 day long cycles

      1. I think you may be missing it. If you’re having periods, then you know you are ovulating. Do you take your BBT temps in the morning? Charting your temps is a great way to predict when you are going to ovulate especially if you are having regular periods.

  3. I have 3 girls , I really want a boy , and if I do become pg with baby #4 this will be are last baby , so if some one can help me here lol. I would really appreciate it.

  4. #Jennifer I have 2 daughters. I want a boy. This is my last chance to have a baby. How can I know about my ovolution date? How many days I should not have sex before and after the date of my ovolution to have a boy? Plz help me

  5. Hi Jennifer,

    I heard that if I’m trying for a girl that I should only have sex once or twice before ovulation. ..the article however says everyday after period until 2-4 days prior to ovulation. Which is true??? Please help I really want a girl…I have 2 boys.
    Thanks so much

    1. I’m in the same boat. I have two boys and really want a girl. I have read in other articles on the Shettles Method that if you want a girl, have MORE intercourse. I think the last time to have intercourse should be 2-4 days before ovulation meaning have sex as many times as you can up to this time period.

  6. I had 28days circle on oct.2015.I had sex on 23rd night and 24th morining and night.Do i have d chance of getting a baby boy?

    1. You don’t have any chance of getting pregnant at all, if you do it will be a baby Girl. If you have a 28 day circle, your ovulation day is on the 14th. But you need to study your circle to know forsure, take your body temperature every morning, check your Cervix Mucus or use the Ovulation predition kit. Once it test positive wait for two days to have intercourse. Whilst you at it, Drink lemon water to make body pH more Alkaline which is good for a boy sperm.

  7. HI,

    I’ve a baby girl and my age is 34 and I’m from BD .I want a baby boy I’ve polycystic ovarian syndrome.I need induction pill to conceive in order to get pregnant. so in my case how do I imply this “Shettle theory” during intercourse. Again I ‘ve to take medicine to regularize period in order to get pregnant and also to fine r8 time for ovulation.

    Now, Please suggest me what I need to do for a baby boy.

  8. This method worked for me… after having 2 beautiful boys, my husband and I decided to try for our last baby so we tried this. I kept track of my ovulation for a few months then had sex as much as possible until I started to ovulate then we just had to wait. I was very surprised to conceive on our first try for a girl but we did and am so happy 20 weeks pregnant.

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